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Forest fires in Algeria: Space-time and cartographic risk analysis (1985-2012) Volume 23, issue 2, Avril-Mai-Juin 2012

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Université Mouloud Mammeri Faculté des sciences biologiques et des sciences agronomiques BP 17 RP 15000 Tizi Ouzou Algérie

Analysis of information on forest fires over several years makes it possible to determine the spatial and temporal fire risk. One objective of this analysis of past fires is to show how the interpretation of statistics of a large number of fires can be used to develop strategies for preventing and managing forest fires. The exploratory statistical analysis of past fires in the 40 wilayas (departments) of Northern Algeria revealed that Algeria is strongly affected by forest fires, with a total of 42,555 fires, which burned a wooded area of 910,640 hectares during the period 1985-2010.The results show a temporality of wildfires, since they occur mostly in August and especially within the 12-16 pm time period. The annual trend shows the variability of forest fires and especially the catastrophic years, 1993, 1994, 2000 and 2007. Spatially, it appears that the phenomenon of forest fires is very recurrent in the departments of the coastal zone and the sub-coastal mountains of the eastern portion of Algeria, which is the most heavily forested.